NOIA Network – Faster Internet for us Plus a Passive Income for You!

Preamble

In this article, I discuss the NOIA Network and their solution to making the internet quicker, more efficient, and giving users an opportunity to earn a passive income through the use of their idle computing resources.

NOIA have already launched their testnet, and are inviting anyone interested in their solution and project to create and account and to start contributing your idle computing resources to the testnet.

I’ll discuss the benefits of contributing your computing resources to the NOIA Network during this article.

Our internet speeds could be a lot better

In a world where our advances in technology are rapidly progressing, our global internet infrastructure is largely fragmented and often lacks integrity.

Our internet speeds vary drastically across the globe, and some developed nations actually have internet speeds that are slower than some developing nations.

And these greatly differing internet speeds are largely the reasons as to why data transfers between distant locations can be incredibly slow and inefficient. To many, these problems don’t seem like a significant issue. But for website operators who want to deliver content to global audiences, varying internet speeds can be a significant issue. Especially where that content is resource intensive, such as video and live streaming content, which is becoming more and more common in these modern times.

Content Delivery Networks

Content delivery networks (CDNs) were created to help alleviate these data transfer problems.

“CDN providers maintain globally distributed, strategically placed Points of Presence (POP) or Data Centres, that are used to cache content locally and deliver it based on the geographical proximity of a request.” Source

CDNs effectively allow for resource intensive content to be loaded quickly, regardless of the geographical location of the website visitor.  Currently, CDNs form the backbone of the internet and are responsible for the majority of the content distributed globally today.

Source

In 2016, the CDN market was valued at USD $6 billion.  BY 2022, CDNs, and similar products, is projected to grow to a market size of USD $31 billion.  This is a big industry, and ripe for disruption.

This presents an interesting problem however.  The global internet infrastructure is not developing fast enough to manage the ever growing demand.

Video content creation, online gaming, Virtual Reality technologies, and streaming of video and gaming content are growing at fantastic rates and shows no sign of slowing down. So it’s plainly obvious that our rate of infrastructure development will be hard pressed to keep up with the continually growing demand for our ever more resource intensive content preferences.

Source

There’s also a few problems with relying solely on CDN infrastructure for content distribution:

  • CDNs are highly centralised – therefore open for control and manipulation.
  • Where their distribution is limited, their benefits for content delivery is limited.
  • The current CDN market is dominated by Akamai and Amazon. Therefore the cost to access these services is decided by only 2 key players in the market.
  • The infrastructure required, using current technologies, to improve the distribution of bandwidth intensive content worldwide is incredibly expensive. This will likely slow technological developments in this area greatly unless an innovative solution is developed.

The NOIA Solution

When looking at the problem described above, the team behind the NOIA Network recognised that the available bandwidth capacities per household continue to increase rapidly, creating a large volume of idle bandwidth across the globe.

This idle bandwidth presents a fantastic opportunity to address the shortfall in available bandwidth globally, and the high level of centralisation in current networks.

Every computer that is connected to the internet already forms the backbone of the internet, however these computers typically only consume data, rather than streaming data to other users.

As stated in the NOIA white paper:

“By connecting thousands of participants willing to share the idle resources of their personal computers, we can create a sharing economy of data transfer – one that is virtually limitless in terms of scale.

Everyone choosing to participate in the network will pool the unused bandwidth and storage of their computers, creating a highly decentralised and ever scalable network of nodes that are capable of delivering bandwidth intensive content across the globe in a highly efficient manner.

A decentralised network provides a wide range of benefits to the consumer, including:

  • A greater level of security, with no central organisation controlling the Network.
  • Highly efficient and cost effective, with no central entity controlling the network there are no overheads to pay. In addition, the more nodes on the network and more distributed their locations, the lower the energy costs will be to transmit bandwidth intensive data.
  • Utilising technology such as this brings with it increased opportunities for innovation, such as other decentralised services, the further development and utilisation of artificial intelligence technologies, and hosting platforms.
The NOIA Technology Stack

The Architechture

The NOIA Network is comprised of two separate structural elements that will define the network and its features:

  • Content Scaling Layer (CSL)
    • Which will include peer to peer file sharing protocols, artificial intelligence, and blockchain technology that will determine how content will be delivered throughout the network.
  • Governance Layer
    • Which is a set of smart contracts located on the Ethereum blockchain which define what NOIA tokens are and how they are transferred between nodes.

Ultimately the CSL will act as the backbone of the network while the governance layer will enable the transfer of value throughout the network.

Who are NOIA?

“NOIA is the next-generation content scaling network, powered by blockchain technology. It utilizes unused bandwidth from computers around the world to create a widely distributed, efficient and integral layer of internet infrastructure for global content delivery. NOIA is designed to serve as a bandwidth optimization mechanism for every type of web content and provide a significantly more effective and decentralized delivery method across the internet.” Source

NOIA will use next-generation peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing protocols, artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technology  to combine hundreds of thousands of computers to serve as nodes in one single “intranet” and provide an opportunity to every web content provider in the world to use this “intranet” to deliver their content across the globe.

NOIA’s aim is to become a fully self-sustained and decentralised network of hundreds of thousands of nodes that pool together to share their resources, These nodes will be governed by the rules in smart contracts and operated with NOIA tokens. The nodes within this network will serve as a never  before seen infrastructure layer that will provide the fastest, most optimised and cost-efficient content delivery system on the internet.

The Team

The team behind this project is impressive.  The founders have put together a highly skilled and extensive team of personnel who are well equipped to deliver the project’s roadmap.

Founders and Business Team
Advisors
Tech Advisors

The Roadmap

Source

So far, NOIA have achieved all scheduled items on their roadmap, which isn’t all that surprising given the size of the team who are working on this project.

The Testnet for the NOIA network has already been released.  What this means is that NOIA are inviting you to create an account and start using the network, whether that be through providing your computing resources to the network or via the purchase of resourcing power for your project.

Why share your computers bandwidth and storage capacity?

Users who choose to share their computer’s idle bandwidth and storage will be rewarded for doing so in the form of NOIA tokens. They can then use these tokens to either purchase services through the NOIA network, hold them with the view of accumulating wealth, or convert them to their currency of choice.

The NOIA Token Economy

The NOIA token is the only currency used within the NOIA network.  Therefore, people wanting to purchase services within the NOIA network will purchase these services using the NOIA token.  According to the white paper, one token purchases the equivalent of 5 GB of data transfer however this amount is likely to be different today as the value of the token is not pegged.

Typically, current content delivery service providers charge around US $0.08 cents per 1 GB of data transfer. NOIA expects that, using their network, 1 GB would cost roughly US $0.01 cents which makes the NOIA Network substantially cheaper than current providers.

Why use the NOIA network to distribute content?

Using the NOIA network will be much more cost effective in comparison to utilising CDN networks. In addition to this, with the ever expanding distribution of nodes on the network, there will be a much greater efficiency in the distribution of content.

The high level of efficiency gained on this network is thanks to blockchain technology, which has the capability to be autonomous and is highly scalable.

“A Smart Contracts layer within NOIA’s network governs all relationships between the different actors in the network by providing a framework for the creation and flow of value within it.” Source

Using the NOIA Network to create a passive income stream

If you’re like me, then you’ll really be wanting to know about the potential to create a passive income stream by contributing computing resources to the NOIA Network.

This passive income stream will be created by setting up your own node, or series of nodes.

The NOIA white paper describes nodes as being:

“Nodes will be comprised of either previously idle home networked computer (which had been a net cost to their owners), and dedicated network endpoints expressly purchased for the purpose of earning NOIA Tokens.”

The free market will determine how much each node will earn, particularly due to the variability in the amount of resources each node contributes to the market, however NOIA believes that the median payout per node will be in the vicinity of US $50 per month.

Use of Nodes and Smart Contracts on the Network

NOIA tokens will be awarded to nodes based on a number of variables:

  • Amount of storage contributed to the network
  • The bandwidth utilisation (the rate at which a node is serving content)
  • The uptime factor (how much time is the node available/ accessible on the network)

Assuming that your node is contributing a significant amount of storage capacity, bandwidth and is available 24 hours per day, it could easily expected that you will be earning a passive income above the median rate of US $50 per month.

My personal opinion is that the earning potential of the NOIA network is well worth testing. And I’m currently in the process of setting up an account on the NOIA Testnet. If you have a computer available that you can leave running for 72 hours per week or longer, then I encourage you to start contributing to the testnet to determine the level of passive income that you can earn from the NOIA network.

It’s a win-win for everyone

Using the NOIA Network is a win-win for both the users who provide bandwidth and storage to the network and for those who choose to distribute their content via this network.  Users who provide their bandwidth and storage are rewarded via payment in NOIA tokens while those distributing content via the network are rewarded by a highly efficient network and a highly cost effective network for content distribution.

The NOIA Testnet is live! And I encourage you to get involved and try it out. Personally, I’ll have my own node set up very soon.  I’m very eager to see how many tokens my little computer can generate for me.

So set up your own node and let me know how it goes for you.  I’ll report back to let you know how my own node performs over the coming weeks.

NOIA Network – Faster Internet for us Plus a Passive Income for You!

Preamble

In this article, I discuss the NOIA Network and their solution to making the internet quicker, more efficient, and giving users an opportunity to earn a passive income through the use of their idle computing resources.

NOIA have already launched their testnet, and are inviting anyone interested in their solution and project to create and account and to start contributing your idle computing resources to the testnet.

I’ll discuss the benefits of contributing your computing resources to the NOIA Network during this article.

Our internet speeds could be a lot better

In a world where our advances in technology are rapidly progressing, our global internet infrastructure is largely fragmented and often lacks integrity.

Our internet speeds vary drastically across the globe, and some developed nations actually have internet speeds that are slower than some developing nations.

And these greatly differing internet speeds are largely the reasons as to why data transfers between distant locations can be incredibly slow and inefficient. To many, these problems don’t seem like a significant issue. But for website operators who want to deliver content to global audiences, varying internet speeds can be a significant issue. Especially where that content is resource intensive, such as video and live streaming content, which is becoming more and more common in these modern times.

Content Delivery Networks

Content delivery networks (CDNs) were created to help alleviate these data transfer problems.

“CDN providers maintain globally distributed, strategically placed Points of Presence (POP) or Data Centres, that are used to cache content locally and deliver it based on the geographical proximity of a request.” Source

CDNs effectively allow for resource intensive content to be loaded quickly, regardless of the geographical location of the website visitor.  Currently, CDNs form the backbone of the internet and are responsible for the majority of the content distributed globally today.

Source

In 2016, the CDN market was valued at USD $6 billion.  BY 2022, CDNs, and similar products, is projected to grow to a market size of USD $31 billion.  This is a big industry, and ripe for disruption.

This presents an interesting problem however.  The global internet infrastructure is not developing fast enough to manage the ever growing demand.

Video content creation, online gaming, Virtual Reality technologies, and streaming of video and gaming content are growing at fantastic rates and shows no sign of slowing down. So it’s plainly obvious that our rate of infrastructure development will be hard pressed to keep up with the continually growing demand for our ever more resource intensive content preferences.

Source

There’s also a few problems with relying solely on CDN infrastructure for content distribution:

  • CDNs are highly centralised – therefore open for control and manipulation.
  • Where their distribution is limited, their benefits for content delivery is limited.
  • The current CDN market is dominated by Akamai and Amazon. Therefore the cost to access these services is decided by only 2 key players in the market.
  • The infrastructure required, using current technologies, to improve the distribution of bandwidth intensive content worldwide is incredibly expensive. This will likely slow technological developments in this area greatly unless an innovative solution is developed.

The NOIA Solution

When looking at the problem described above, the team behind the NOIA Network recognised that the available bandwidth capacities per household continue to increase rapidly, creating a large volume of idle bandwidth across the globe.

This idle bandwidth presents a fantastic opportunity to address the shortfall in available bandwidth globally, and the high level of centralisation in current networks.

Every computer that is connected to the internet already forms the backbone of the internet, however these computers typically only consume data, rather than streaming data to other users.

As stated in the NOIA white paper:

“By connecting thousands of participants willing to share the idle resources of their personal computers, we can create a sharing economy of data transfer – one that is virtually limitless in terms of scale.

Everyone choosing to participate in the network will pool the unused bandwidth and storage of their computers, creating a highly decentralised and ever scalable network of nodes that are capable of delivering bandwidth intensive content across the globe in a highly efficient manner.

A decentralised network provides a wide range of benefits to the consumer, including:

  • A greater level of security, with no central organisation controlling the Network.
  • Highly efficient and cost effective, with no central entity controlling the network there are no overheads to pay. In addition, the more nodes on the network and more distributed their locations, the lower the energy costs will be to transmit bandwidth intensive data.
  • Utilising technology such as this brings with it increased opportunities for innovation, such as other decentralised services, the further development and utilisation of artificial intelligence technologies, and hosting platforms.
The NOIA Technology Stack

The Architechture

The NOIA Network is comprised of two separate structural elements that will define the network and its features:

  • Content Scaling Layer (CSL)
    • Which will include peer to peer file sharing protocols, artificial intelligence, and blockchain technology that will determine how content will be delivered throughout the network.
  • Governance Layer
    • Which is a set of smart contracts located on the Ethereum blockchain which define what NOIA tokens are and how they are transferred between nodes.

Ultimately the CSL will act as the backbone of the network while the governance layer will enable the transfer of value throughout the network.

Who are NOIA?

“NOIA is the next-generation content scaling network, powered by blockchain technology. It utilizes unused bandwidth from computers around the world to create a widely distributed, efficient and integral layer of internet infrastructure for global content delivery. NOIA is designed to serve as a bandwidth optimization mechanism for every type of web content and provide a significantly more effective and decentralized delivery method across the internet.” Source

NOIA will use next-generation peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing protocols, artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technology  to combine hundreds of thousands of computers to serve as nodes in one single “intranet” and provide an opportunity to every web content provider in the world to use this “intranet” to deliver their content across the globe.

NOIA’s aim is to become a fully self-sustained and decentralised network of hundreds of thousands of nodes that pool together to share their resources, These nodes will be governed by the rules in smart contracts and operated with NOIA tokens. The nodes within this network will serve as a never  before seen infrastructure layer that will provide the fastest, most optimised and cost-efficient content delivery system on the internet.

The Team

The team behind this project is impressive.  The founders have put together a highly skilled and extensive team of personnel who are well equipped to deliver the project’s roadmap.

Founders and Business Team
Advisors
Tech Advisors

The Roadmap

Source

So far, NOIA have achieved all scheduled items on their roadmap, which isn’t all that surprising given the size of the team who are working on this project.

The Testnet for the NOIA network has already been released.  What this means is that NOIA are inviting you to create an account and start using the network, whether that be through providing your computing resources to the network or via the purchase of resourcing power for your project.

Why share your computers bandwidth and storage capacity?

Users who choose to share their computer’s idle bandwidth and storage will be rewarded for doing so in the form of NOIA tokens. They can then use these tokens to either purchase services through the NOIA network, hold them with the view of accumulating wealth, or convert them to their currency of choice.

The NOIA Token Economy

The NOIA token is the only currency used within the NOIA network.  Therefore, people wanting to purchase services within the NOIA network will purchase these services using the NOIA token.  According to the white paper, one token purchases the equivalent of 5 GB of data transfer however this amount is likely to be different today as the value of the token is not pegged.

Typically, current content delivery service providers charge around US $0.08 cents per 1 GB of data transfer. NOIA expects that, using their network, 1 GB would cost roughly US $0.01 cents which makes the NOIA Network substantially cheaper than current providers.

Why use the NOIA network to distribute content?

Using the NOIA network will be much more cost effective in comparison to utilising CDN networks. In addition to this, with the ever expanding distribution of nodes on the network, there will be a much greater efficiency in the distribution of content.

The high level of efficiency gained on this network is thanks to blockchain technology, which has the capability to be autonomous and is highly scalable.

“A Smart Contracts layer within NOIA’s network governs all relationships between the different actors in the network by providing a framework for the creation and flow of value within it.” Source

Using the NOIA Network to create a passive income stream

If you’re like me, then you’ll really be wanting to know about the potential to create a passive income stream by contributing computing resources to the NOIA Network.

This passive income stream will be created by setting up your own node, or series of nodes.

The NOIA white paper describes nodes as being:

“Nodes will be comprised of either previously idle home networked computer (which had been a net cost to their owners), and dedicated network endpoints expressly purchased for the purpose of earning NOIA Tokens.”

The free market will determine how much each node will earn, particularly due to the variability in the amount of resources each node contributes to the market, however NOIA believes that the median payout per node will be in the vicinity of US $50 per month.

Use of Nodes and Smart Contracts on the Network

NOIA tokens will be awarded to nodes based on a number of variables:

  • Amount of storage contributed to the network
  • The bandwidth utilisation (the rate at which a node is serving content)
  • The uptime factor (how much time is the node available/ accessible on the network)

Assuming that your node is contributing a significant amount of storage capacity, bandwidth and is available 24 hours per day, it could easily expected that you will be earning a passive income above the median rate of US $50 per month.

My personal opinion is that the earning potential of the NOIA network is well worth testing. And I’m currently in the process of setting up an account on the NOIA Testnet. If you have a computer available that you can leave running for 72 hours per week or longer, then I encourage you to start contributing to the testnet to determine the level of passive income that you can earn from the NOIA network.

It’s a win-win for everyone

Using the NOIA Network is a win-win for both the users who provide bandwidth and storage to the network and for those who choose to distribute their content via this network.  Users who provide their bandwidth and storage are rewarded via payment in NOIA tokens while those distributing content via the network are rewarded by a highly efficient network and a highly cost effective network for content distribution.

The NOIA Testnet is live! And I encourage you to get involved and try it out. Personally, I’ll have my own node set up very soon.  I’m very eager to see how many tokens my little computer can generate for me.

So set up your own node and let me know how it goes for you.  I’ll report back to let you know how my own node performs over the coming weeks.

Is KuCoin Safe to Use?

I was chatting in Discord today rather than creating content for Steemit. This seems to be a frequent problem lately. But an article posted by someone raised some concerns about the cryptocurrency exchange – KuCoin.

Source

KuCoin lists their address as being in Hong Kong, which makes them appear to be exempt from China’s crack down on Cryptocurrencies.  The problem is that the address listed by KuCoin appears to simply be a virtual mail box, rather than the address of a bricks and mortar business.

So it would seem that KuCoin has no real presence in Hong Kong. The article then states that KuCoin are hiring staff in Sichuan, China. So appear to be operating their exchange out of China. If this is the case, then it places them in the firing line of China’s crackdown on cryptocurrency websites and domestic exchanges.

Even more concerning, however, is that the author of this article actually visited the office in Hong Kong that KuCoin has listed as their address.  The employees in office are working for a different company that isn’t affiliated with KuCoin, who had never heard of them.

Source

KuCoin is registered under a secretarial company called Smart Team Secretarial Ltd who once operated out of this office, however the employees of this office stated that this company had moved out years ago.

So what does all of this mean?

My main concern is that KuCoin are operating from an unknown location and are potentially operating out of China, which puts them at risk of China’s current crack down on cryptocurrency trading, websites and exchanges.

But a quick search on KuCoin’s website leads you to this announcement:

“Dear KuCoin Users,There have been rumors that KuCoin’s central office in Hong Kong is empty. In fact, KuCoin’s public address in Hong Kong is merely a mailing address of one of KuCoin’s many subsidiary companies. KuCoin Headquarters is in Singapore. KuCoin has always been a global firm, with over 300 employees and four major offices in China, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand.

KuCoin has been growing at an incredible speed and will be growing even faster in future. We are grateful for all of the support from our community and stay tuned for some incredible news which we will release soon.

Thanks for your support!
The KuCoin Team”
So it would seem that KuCoin at least are trying to be somewhat transparent. It still leaves a little to be desired since they haven’t listed their physical locations.  But it does give us a little confidence that they are willing to address the concerns raised.
Will I continue to use KuCoin for my trading? Yes. Will I leave my coins on the exchange? Absolutely not.
But you shouldn’t leave your coins on exchanges anyway. Trade safely!

Did Ross Ulbricht Really Deserve a Double Life Sentence?

A few months ago I listened to the fascinating story of Ross Ulbricht. If you don’t know who this man is, you’ve been living under a crypto rock. Ross is the man who created The Silk Road, an online marketplace that was located on the dark web and used to sell drugs and many other things in exchange for Bitcoin. Ross was eventually caught in 2013 and given a double life sentence for creating this marketplace, and has now served 5 years of his sentence.

Source

The brilliant thing about this marketplace is that it was one of the first places where Bitcoin could be used to buy products, and it also created a safe environment in which people could purchase their drugs. I’m not a drug user, but if I were, I would much rather purchase my drugs via an online marketplace like the Silk Road than from someone on the street. Dealers on the Silk Road built up reputations based on the quality of their product, so you’d have some confidence that the product you were purchasing was as advertised and of decent quality.

The Silk Road was incredibly successful, and Ross made many millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin during the time that he operated the site. It is estimated that Ross made more than 600,000 bitcoins in commissions from the site which, in todays value of Bitcoin, would be worth roughly US $4.9 billion.

Source

Ross’s story is fascinating stuff, and well worth reading or listening to.  I’m not going to recount the story here as I don’t believe I can do it justice. So I would encourage you to listen to the Casefile Podcast which gives a good run-down of the story. You can find Part 1 of the podcast here.

I will include one caveat here though; this podcast tells the story based on the court proceedings and documents only, it fails to provide the story from Ross’s or his family’s perspective. There are a lot of problems with this case, and many errors made during the judgement. There are even examples of tampering with evidence which went unchallenged along with apparent corruption throughout the proceedings. You can read about this at the Free Ross website, this is also an interesting read and partly why I am writing this post today.

I am writing this post today because Ross has received a double life sentence for creating his online marketplace. His crime was not violent, and those who were convicted of selling drugs on his marketplace received much lesser sentences.

Source

The reality is that Ross was much like the creator of Amazon or Ebay. He provided the platform for the sale of these products, but wasn’t responsible for every item that was listed on the marketplace. Sure, he sold some magic mushrooms and possibly some weed but he wasn’t the sole distributor on the platform. In fact he sold substantially less product on the platform in comparison to most of the dealers who used his platform.

There have been examples of child pornography on Facebook, of Amazon selling cyanide to a young girl who then committed suicide, and many other examples of online marketplaces being used for questionable activities. But the CEOs and owners of these marketplaces have never been sent to jail.

Source

Ross should not be serving a double life sentence, he should not have been charged as a kingpin, which is a charge given to leaders or organised crime syndicates. Realistically, Ross should have already served his sentence. This is a man who is highly unlikely to go on and commit another crime. Let alone a violent crime.

So I encourage you to look at this case and see it for its failings. This man was given a sentence that was completely unjust and unreasonable. And I ask that you sign this petition to encourage the American government to overturn his charge.

I also encourage you to read or listen to the Silk Road story, it’s one of the most fascinating stories that I have ever heard. But a very sad one given the outcome.

Sign the petition here.

 

My Steem Story – 297 Days of Steemit

This is my entry into an excellent competition being run by @whatsup.  If you don’t know who @whatsup is, he’s a very active Steemit user who works hard to increase the level of engagement we see on our posts. He also creates consistently interesting content, so check him out.

This competition is quite simply telling your story as to how you came across Steemit and your experience to date on the platform. So here’s my little tale.

Source

Finding Steemit

I heard about Bitcoin back around 2012 when it reached $20 and hit the mainstream media for this price rise. I was working on a mine site and thought I’d grab $1000 worth as soon as I got to my computer.

As with many people, I forgot about it, and never bought a single coin. So when cryptocurrency started getting back into the media in October 2017, I remembered hearing about Bitcoin back in 2012 and kicked myself very hard for not buying $1000 worth back then. In 2012, $1000 worth of bitcoin would have bought me 50 coins, and 50 coins when Bitcoin reached its’ peak of $20,000 would have been worth $1,000,000. I could have quite literally become a millionaire with an investment of $1000.

Source

As a result of recognising this missed opportunity, I started researching the cryptocurrencies a little more deeply. I was reading blogs, listening to podcasts, and watching various YouTube videos on the topic. Eventually, I stumbled across a podcast by Chris Coney (@marketingmonk) where he was discussing Steemit and other currencies.

Naturally, being someone who enjoys writing, I headed straight over to Steemit and created an account.  I didn’t even browse the posts on Steemit before creating an account, and if I’m honest, that’s probably a good thing.  Many a content creator could easily be scared away if they looked at the posts under the “new” tab and even the trending tab for that matter.

My Steemit Journey so far

I didn’t take Steemit all that seriously when I first started.  Initially, I just wanted to see how easy it was to earn some free crypto. So I was posting what can only be considered rubbish. In time though, I started taking the platform a little more seriously and started to think more seriously about the type of content that I wanted to produce and the topics that I wanted to discuss on my blog.

I started writing about wildlife photography, beer, wine, my early research into cryptocurrencies and a few other topics.  I started entering writing competitions and writing about very personal stories and experiences.

When the crypto market went through the highs of late 2017 I started pumping out as many as 5 posts a day on Steemit and it was at this time that I discovered what it was like to be a shit poster. My content wasn’t great and my posts were only taking a few minutes to produce. Thankfully, I started questioning what I wanted to be known for on Steemit, so in early 2018 I pulled back on my posting frequency and started caring about the quality of my content.

Source

Over time, my writing style has evolved and become more structured. I’ve started learning about the strategies that can be used to increase engagement if that’s what I’m after or simply how to properly structure a post in order to communicate your chosen message.

And I haven’t just produced written material over this time. I’ve even tried my hand at creating videos on DTube which is something that I never before would have done had it not been for some encouragement from a fellow Steemit user and a curiosity to see if I could actually do it.

And when it comes to Steemit, there are many ways to earn your currency.  A few months ago I launched Steemit Shop Australia, which was an online store that sold Steemit and DTube merchandise. People could pay in Steem and SBD if they chose to, and many people did.  The store was fantastic, but sadly wasn’t earning enough to maintain itself. So I have closed the store for the time being with plans to open a new one in the coming weeks. You can still by merchandise from me though, check out the post I wrote about this yesterday. One of the coolest things about my shop is seeing people all over the world wearing my merchandise (check the shirt that @snook is wearing in her video, here, that’s one of mine).  It’s been amazing to see just how far reaching this little shop that I built one night over a few beers has reached.

I was even involved in the creation of @blockdeals, which was a deals and coupon listing platform built on the Steem Blockchain. This is an awesome use of the Steem Blockchain where users can be rewarded for finding awesome deals and coupons, and sharing them with the community. Through their sharing of these deals, the user gets rewarded in Steem and SBD. So, in theory, a person could earn enough currency to buy the product they find if the community likes their post enough. We were unable to get the delegation needed to make this project a success though. So the team has disbanded. There is hope though, I don’t think the devs have entirely given up on the project so we may see something come of it yet.

And through my writing posts and engaging with other Steemit users, I  stumbled across some fellow Australians on Steemit and was invited to join the #TeamAustralia community. This proved to be an excellent decision as I’ve since met a number of Steemit users face to face at meet ups in Melbourne and even a couple of Steemit users in Adelaide.

So lets summarise my mistakes on Steemit to date and the things I’m glad I did and experienced and will continue doing.

Source

My mistakes

  • Cashing out my earnings early on. Don’t do it, power up everything. I’d be at more than 2000 SP by now if I hadn’t tried my hand at trading on the exchanges with the Steem and SBD that I made in the early days.
  • Shit posting – just don’t do it. It ruins your reputation as a content creator and it can be hard to earn the the respect and trust of your fellow Steemians if you become known for it.

Things I’d do again and keep doing

  • Going out of my way to meet people, both online and in real life. I’ve met so many amazing people on Steemit so far, and continue to do so.
  • Having a big focus on creating quality content rather than a vast quantity of content.  It doesn’t matter if your earnings are a little less, your followers will appreciate you all the more if they see you care about quality over quantity.
  • Entering as many competitions as possible. Getting your content in front of new people through competitions is one of the best things you can do. Plus the prizes can be great.
  • Getting out of my comfort zone and making videos on DTube.
  • Getting involved in new projects on the Steemit and the Blockchain.  My online shop and @blockdeals were both excellent things to create and be involved in. And my online store will definitely be live again soon.

The Future

Right now, I’m trying out @steempress for my blogging and have returned to creating written content rather than blogging.  I’m also spending a large amount of time researching cryptocurrencies and the various ways in which we can invest in them.

This is partly so that I can diversify my cryptocurrency holdings but also so that I can help others learn about this little world of ours.

I’ll probably continue to create video content, but for the time being I’m enjoying writing again. It’s what I do best.

And of course, I’ll be releasing my new store in the future as well, which will hopefully stock some different products from what I have listed previously.

 

Taking on the Giants – The IAGON Solution

Taking on the Giants with Cloud Computing

Cloud computing services are currently highly centralised and are controlled by a select number of companies, the main companies being Google, Microsoft, IBM and Amazon.

This means, that these companies are in absolute control of vast amounts of data, which they can and will use as they please. And it also means that should there be a security breach, these companies could potentially leak this vast amount of data to anyone with ill intentions for its use. We’ve seen data leaks occur on multiple occasions, and these leaks continue to happen on a very frequent basis.

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What’s more, the need for increased computational processing power and and cloud storage is on a continuous uptrend, and with the development of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies, and the increased utilisation of Big Data, cloud storage and processing power services are only going to be in greater demand as we progress through the years.

And these services are already big business, but it’s growing at an amazing rate:

“The size of the cloud services market providing both storage capacities and computational    processing capabilities to companies and to corporates is estimated by 45 billion USD per annum and it steadily grows.” Source

Decentralising the Cloud Services Industry

So I was very interested to read about IAGON in this week’s @orignalworks writing contest.  It’s not every day that you hear someone say that they plan to take on the likes of Amazon, Google, Microsoft and IBM.  But that’s exactly what IAGON are planning on doing.

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IAGON aims to, in their own words:

“revolutionize the cloud and web services market by offering a decentralized grid of storage and processing. By joining the unused storage capacity in servers and personal computers and their processing power, we can create a super-computer and super data center that can compete with any of the current cloud computing moguls.”

They’re doing this through the creation of a decentralised cloud service network. This network will offer highly secure cloud storage services while also offering additional processing power for organisations and individuals who need additional computing resources for performing complex tasks such as processing Big Data and developing AI technology.  These services will be highly secure via military grade encryption and completely decentralised. IAG tokens will used by companies as the currency for paying for access to the network.

Individuals and organisations will be able to earn IAG tokens by “renting” their computers unused or under-utilised storage and processing power to the IAGON network.   And anyone will be able to purchase storage and processing power via these tokens.

The “mining” of IAG tokens is essentially undertaken through the provision of storage or processing power to the network. And this makes it possible for anyone to get involved in mining IAG tokens and participating in the network.

Big plans and bigger targets – can they achieve them?

There’s a lot to love about this project. And their goals are massive. Taking on the big players in the cloud services arena is a huge undertaking so you want to make sure you’ve got the right people around you and a solid strategy to make it happen.

IAGON have provided a very clear roadmap, which can also be viewed on the IAGON website. So far, all development of the project has met the deadlines listed on this roadmap.

You’ll find the roadmap here.

The first thing that impressed me about this project was that there are a lot of people giving this project a great rating, check out these scores:

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It’s a rare day that you see an up-coming project with ratings like this. The next thing that gives me confidence that this group know what they’re doing is the team.

The IAGON Team

The team behind this project is extensive and brings a wealth of expertise to the platform.  More importantly, the founders are highly qualified and experienced, and have employed the necessary people where their knowledge may be lacking.

See the full list of IAGON team members here.

It’s rare to see a platform with so many Doctors on the team. But with a project like this it’s not at all surprising.

And there are Partnerships

The IAGON team have brought on a number of partners into this project, which is a fantastic indication of just how much of a demand and support there is for a project such as this.  Below is a selection of some of the partners involved in this project, however even over the past couple of days there have been more announced

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The IAGON Main Net

IAGON have a functioning Main Net which, once the project has officially launched, will be comprised of the network of data centres and individual computers which have offered their under-utilised storage capacity for the storage of Big Data and any other information that users of the network choose to store on the platform.

What’s even more interesting, is that IAGON plan to implement the network on a hybrid blockchain/ tangle platform. I won’t comment on this given that I’m not technically astute enough to do this particular detail justice. However I did hear some talk of work taking place with IOTA to make this happen on one of the various YouTube interviews with the founders that you can find.

And the data centres and computers which have offered up their processing power will in-turn have their processing power combined into what can be considered a decentralised super computer which can be used to perform the complex tasks required for processing power intensive tasks such as AI technologies, speech recognition, robotics and so on.

And it is through this process that users offering storage and processing power to the network will earn IAG tokens, after corporations and individuals who need access to the network purchase their access using these tokens.

Decentralisation provides more than one solution

Creating a decentralised cloud services platform has enabled IAGON to solve two problems with the one solution.  Through a decentralised network, IAGON are able to provide a level of security that will prevent the types of data leaks that we’ve seen in this industry in recent weeks, months and years.

In addition to this, IAGON are able to combine the storage and processing power of data centres and computers globally to provide the level of processing power that is required to perform the increasingly complex tasks that we require with our rapid advances in the AI and Big Data processing space.

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Finally, IAGON will also be implementing machine learning and AI into their network which will allow the network to intelligently decide how to allocate storage and processing power resources to those who need them.  Using AI in this network will allow the network to continuously advance and improve on itself

Concluding Remarks

I think it’s quite obvious that I am a huge fan of this project. So much so that I have created an account and have submitted a mining application.  I’ll be offering part of my computers processing power and storage for use by the IAGON network right from the beginning.

I completely agree that we’ll be seeing a huge demand for cloud storage and processing services in the future, and IAGON are offering a fantastic solution to the limitations faced in this market.

Main Sale

The pre-sale for the project took place back in May this year, with the soft cap being reached. Now, the main sale is currently underway. So, if you want to get involved, then head on over to the website to find out more.

And if you want to get involved in setting up a mining account, then click here to get involved.

Learn more

Learn more about the project here.  IAGON are on Steemit!

iagon2018

Does earn.com really give free Bitcoin?

It does, but the real question is – Is it worth the effort?

I discovered a little website called earn.com from the #BeerSaturday creator @detlev.  Mr Detlev wrote about this site quite some time ago, and I’ve been using the site ever since with the view to write about my experience here on Steemit. Which I never really got around doing until now.

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Earn.com is a site where you get invited to complete simple tasks and in return you get paid a small sum of Bitcoin. The site claims that you can earn anywhere from $1 to $100 for completing tasks.  And it seems that if you have skills and high level knowledge in blockchain, engineering and other IT related skills then you may very well be able to earn at the higher end of the spectrum.  If you’re a well established investor or influencer then you might find yourself in demand in the platform as well.

You receive jobs by applying to be included on “lists” which match your skills and knowledge. And given that I don’t have a background in IT and my knowledge of Blockchain is entirely self taught, the lists that I am on are for all fairly low value tasks. As a result, I only get contacted by companies launching new ICOs and wanting me to sign up to their Telegram channel and other platforms. And by doing so, I receive the equivalent of $1 US dollar in Bitcoin per task.

So, for the minimal time that I’ve put into earn.com thus far, I’ve made around $25 in Bitcoin which I have transferred to Bittrex and converted into Steem Power. I should mention though, that through the process I’ve had to sign up to numerous email lists.  So if you’re going to get involved, I’d recommend setting up a separate email address so that you don’t get your main account spammed with endless emails for ICOs etc.

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It’s also very sporadic with the job requests. So while I’ve mentioned that I haven’t put much time into this, the time has been spread over numerous weeks. And it can be a little distracting seeing these job requests pop up from time to time.  The job requests also have a time limit on them, so if you leave them too long the will expire.

One of the good things about the site is that you can transfer any amount you like to an off site wallet. My first transfer was worth all of $11 in Bitcoin. So at least the site has passed my first and most important test:

Yes, you can actually earn Bitcoin from earn.com.

Will you make a tonne of money there? Probably not. Is it worth your time and energy? Maybe, but you could invest that time into creating content on Steemit and quite probably make the same amount of money, if not more.  Will I continue using earn.com? Well, I’ve just applied to be included on some extra lists which might lead to higher paying jobs, so yes, I’ll give it another month. And I’ll certainly report back if I make anything worthwhile from the site.

If you’re curious and want to give it a shot, you can get a little bonus by using my referral link, and naturally, I’ll get a little kick back as well.

How do you get your content noticed with no followers?

In recent days I’ve seen a couple of posts about established Steemit users discovering Steemit users who were creating amazing content but weren’t getting their content noticed.

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And I’ve also stumbled across a few Steemit users myself who really deserved much larger rewards and recognition than they are receiving. And not just from the perspective of quality content creation.  I have encountered highly active and very passionate Steemit users who simply deserve encouragement to continue working on their skills as a content creator. We can’t only reward those who create outstanding content, the users who are working hard to develop their craft need reward as well.

Based on these observations, it seems that it is getting harder to get noticed on Steemit these days.  

Continue reading “How do you get your content noticed with no followers?”

Booze and Crypto – Does it mix?

Beer and Crypto – There’s nothing better right?

It looks like people have been trying to release alcohol related cryptocurrencies for some time now.  There was QYKbar which attempted to sell drinks via blockchain so that you could purchase your drinks using the QYK currency and consume them at any bar or restaurant that agreed to accept the token. Work on this project appears to have ceased as of April this year and their Telegram channel has been deleted.

And then there have been the various beer coins.  I’ve been able to find this one and this one that didn’t appear to make much progress at all. They both seem to have had similar goals which solely consisted of taking peoples money via whatever means possible.

Source 

Is there a legit booze based currency?

There is hope, and for good reason. The alcoholic beverages industry in the US alone is is a 220 billion dollar industry.  This is an industry that is ripe for disruption so blockchain technology has a real opportunity here.

I recently stumbled across Beerchain though the weekly Beer Drinking competition that I participate in on Steemit.  Beerchain have created their own Beercoin (an ERC20 token) and they’ve actually put a decent amount of work into getting the project off the ground.

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The coins are quite literally mined through the consumption of beer, which is both awesome and very unique. Essentially, a merchant (typically a brewery) will order QR codes from Beerchain who will then provide the codes for printing on the inside of bottle caps.  The brewer then distributes the beers, with Beercoin bottle caps fitted, to bars and other places where this golden fluid of the gods is sold.

The QR codes aren’t limited to just bottle caps however.  Bars and restaurants can also print the QR codes onto beer coasters and receipts as well, which is a nice way to ensure that this coin doesn’t only need to rely on brewers for the success of this coin.

Consumers who purchase these beers will then scan the bottle caps using the Beercoin app.  The QR code will then release whatever quantity of currency is assigned to that particular QR code.

The quantity of coins distributed via QR codes ranges from 1 coin to 10,000 coins.  Obtaining a high value QR code is rare (0.01% chance of discovery) however the potential to find a QR code with a high value QR code definitely adds some excitement to the “mining” process.

How it all works

Beerchain envisions that the value of the coins will centre around the price of a standard beer.  They plan to peg the price so that 100 Beercoins will typically purchase 1 beer. Pegging the price means that Beerchain will be required to purchase, burn and distribute the coins as they need to in order to ensure the price of the coin enables a user to purchase a standard beer with just 100 coins.

How will the Beerchain founders and staff get paid?

Beerchain plan to generate their income via advertising revenue and by collecting user data (which I imagine they’ll use to advertise products and services to). This is a bit of a shame given that one of the things I personally love about blockchain technologies is that it gives us a chance to create businesses that don’t rely on selling advertisements as an income stream. However, Beerchain is absorbing all transaction costs.  Given that this coin is an ERC20 token, there are small fees for transactions.  Beerchain will not be passing these transactions on to users which is quite a positive for the project.

What can you buy using Beercoins?

The founders believe that users will not only be able to purchase beer from participating vendors using this coin, but they’ll also be able to buy merchandise via the app and donate to charities.

The founders plan to peg the value of the coin so trading it on exchanges won’t be particularly attractive. Does this approach limit the potential of the coin? Maybe, and maybe not. I don’t think the founders see this coin as being a multi-million dollar business venture for themselves. They seem to be working hard just to get the currency being adopted by breweries and gamifying the currency to make it highly attractive to the every day person.

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One of their recent tweets shows that a brewery in Colorado has now started including Beercoin QR codes on all of their beers, which is awesome news and shows that we have a functioning blockchain here.

There are also plans to literally add games into the Beerchain app which could make the whole package even more attractive.

My verdict on this currency

The ICO for Beercoin came to a close at the end of June and sadly it didn’t reach  the soft cap. It seems that there were mixed feelings about this currency.  The team behind it don’t have a lot of blockchain experience and it’s application didn’t seem to bring a lot of excitement to the space.

But the team are pushing ahead and seeing that they have breweries getting on board now is excellent. Their social media presence is still very active, they are speaking at events, and they’ve released their Yellow Paper which are all good signs.

Personally, I think the concept is awesome. And I’d love to see Beercoin become a big deal. But the currency isn’t without its flaws. One review of the coin mentioned that this application doesn’t need blockchain technology and I agree that is probably one weakness here. All we really have here is a system for scoring points, and those points can be accumulated in such a way that allows for redemption for beer or other products and services. This is much like the rewards points given out by certain retailers. So is there really a need for blockchain technology here? Possibly not.

I’ve also noticed that the app is only available on Android devices at the moment and cannot find it for my iPhone. The lack of an iPhone app must surely be hurting Beerchain right now, and I find it odd that they’d claim that the app is available for iPhones when it clearly isn’t.

I do love the idea though, and will definitely support Beercoin if I see it in my local bottle shops or bars. It would be awesome to see people earning this currency in Australia, so hopefully we see it here one day.

Check out the Whitepaper here if you’d like to learn more about this coin. And while it’s probably obvious, I am in no way affiliated with Beerchain or own any of their currency.